NUT Pensions Ballot - press release
- 17 May 2011
The NUT is to ballot members for national strike action in defence of teachers' pensions. The ballot will commence today Tuesday 17 May and will close at midday on Tuesday 14 June 2011.
NUT Annual Conference voted overwhelmingly in favour of balloting members for discontinuous strike action in opposition to unfair and unnecessary changes to teachers' pensions.
The Union is balloting all members of the NUT in England and Wales who are eligible for membership of the Teachers' Pension Scheme (TPS) including teachers in schools, sixth from colleges and academies and many teachers employed in local authorities' central education services.
Christine Blower General Secretary of the National Union of Teachers, the largest teachers' union, said;
"We welcome the fact that we are balloting alongside the ATL and also welcome the decisions taken by the NAHT and ASCL to defend teachers' pensions. UCU has already taken action in respect of TPS members. We are happy to campaign alongside them.
"The anger amongst teachers' is growing. It is quite clear that the Government wants teachers to pay more, work longer and get less for their pensions and the Government has already cut the annual pensions increase with no negotiation.
"It is vital that we build the broadest campaign to send a clear message to Government that this is not acceptable.
"Teachers' pensions are affordable and essential. Our own surveys show that the proposed increases to the TPS will mean that many young teachers could opt out of the scheme all together. This will have disastrous consequences for the profession and recruitment.
"It cannot be right that the Government is seeking to price members out of an entitlement to which they already contribute a good part of their salary. The National Audit Office has confirmed the TPS is sustainable following the changes made in 2007. These include increased contributions and a later retirement age. Costs of the scheme are falling as planned.
"The NUT along with the other teaching unions remains fully committed to reaching an acceptable outcome by negotiation with Government but believes the Government is not taking negotiations seriously. We cannot stand by and see our pensions eroded. Our ballot is intended to help in those negotiations and help us secure a fair deal for teachers.”